Resort chiefs criticise heart bid

COMMUNITY leaders in Felixstowe say the town is on the very edge of the 165 minutes allowed for an emergency heart attack patient to get life-saving treatment.

COMMUNITY leaders in Felixstowe say the town is on the very edge of the 165 minutes allowed for an emergency heart attack patient to get life-saving treatment.

They say sending people to Norwich or Papworth - bypassing Ipswich Hospital on the way - means the resort's residents are being “marginalised” by health bosses.

Town councillor Graham Newman said his research on the AA's road routes service showed it would take one hour 44 minutes to get from Felixstowe to Papworth.

“That's in reasonable traffic conditions but we are talking about a road which has frequent hold-ups, accidents and congestion,” he said.

“But you have to add on to that time the time it takes for people to call an ambulance, the 15 minutes or so for an ambulance to arrive, the time it then takes the paramedics to make an assessment and place you securely in the vehicle - it could be another half an hour before you are on your journey.

“When you get to the other end you have quite a significant delay before you get into the operating theatre, possibly 45 minutes.

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“This puts Felixstowe right on the borderline and it's significantly worse for people in Orford, Leiston, Bawdsey and so on.

“This is what we are facing.

“And what about friends and family trying to make these journeys to be with their loved ones? The length of time it takes to get to these places is being glossed over and consistently under-estimated.”

Former mayor Doreen Savage said the proposed changes to treatment were appalling.

“It seems to me they think we are idiots. We understand perfectly what they are trying to do - we need to scream loud and long from the roofs about this,” she said.

Town councillor Harry Dangerfield said: “We need to protest in the strongest terms. The people of the Felixstowe peninsula are being marginalised and we want to see this situation reversed with proper quality care at Ipswich Hospital.”